Disease on the prowl

Last Updated: Saturday 04 July 2015

according to a report by the World Health Organization ( who ), "hot zones" for Tuberculosis ( tb ) are spreading worldwide, where the new drug-resistant strains could potentially lead to a "virtually incurable" tb . The study entitled, "Anti-Tuberculosis Drug Resistance in the World" says that India is among these "hot zones".

Apart from India, the other "hot zones" identified in the report include Russia, Lativia, Estonia, Argentina, the Dominican Republic and the Ivory Coast. Scientists have expressed concern that many of these zones are "regional centres of travel, emigration and international activity" and that "little can be done" to prevent people infected with drug-resistant tb from travelling and spreading the bacteria to other countries. The report explains that at each of these "hot zones", the disease is often resistant to commonly prescribed drugs -- isoniazid and rifampicin . This makes tb an incurable disease for those who do not have access to the most sophisticated and expensive healthcare.

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